Friday, 13 April 2012

From Drab to Fab!

So the other day I gave you a little preview of a gorgeous little dress I had made. Remember? Well I didn't make the whole dress! It did start out as a onesie.

I mentioned that I would possibly write out a tutorial, and guess what?!? Tonight is the night I do it!

I looked at plenty of tutorials on how to make one of these, and I didn’t really like the look of the end product. For some reason the onesie seemed to look all stretched and out of shape. If you have already made this tutorial, or one very similar, I’m sorry, but I honestly made this up as I went along. 

So here we go – This is a little preview of what you are about to create. Isn’t it the cutest?!

Now before we go on, I just want to add that I am in no way a seamstress, everything I have learnt, I have taught myself (or I watched online). But I like to have a go, and if you can do something a little better, or you have some hints/tips for me, I would LOVE to hear from you.

So step one is to get your supplies. I had my

  • cutting board
  • rotary cutter (scissors work just fine too), 
  • Onesie
  • material to make the skirt part of the dress 
  • sewing machine
  • measuring tape
  • and your thinking cap

First thing I did was measure the width of the onesie I was using. Mine was a size 000 and 9 inches wide.

 Then I took a guess as to how long I wanted it. I wanted the bottom of the dress to sit at bubs knees nicely. 
You have to times the width by 4 to allow for ruffling. Once you determine the length you want, add ½ to one inch to that for seam allowance. Cut that out.

Next step is to hem the bottom of the dress. Pretty straight forward – I did mine the cheaters way. Just fold and sew. But if you want a cleaner, neater finish then I suggest folding ¼ of an inch and iron, and then fold again at a ½ of an inch and iron. Sew that in place. It does look a lot nicer than the simple fold and sew.

Now fold in half, short sides together and right sides facing, then sew together. I like to do a zig zag stitch just for a little extra strength. Turn right side out.

Now the fun part – RUFFLES. For this set your machine to a long stitch and remember not to back stitch or you can’t ruffle. Sew all the way around on your long stitch. Once you’re done grab one of the threads from either end and begin to pull. I didn’t get a photo of this, but its pretty straight forward. The hard part is getting the ruffles to look neat AND to get it to fit around the Onesie.

Keep ruffling until it seems like the width of the onesie. Lay it flat and slip the onesie inside and position it where the skirt should sit. Doing that makes it easier to work out the ruffles and the width.
Once you are done fiddling, pin in place. Then sew. Now THAT is the easy part..

Next is time to make the belt. Double the width of the onesie, so in my case the measurement should be 18” then an extra 1” for seam allowance. Cut a rectangle with the desired width of the belt, plus the 19” inches for the belt length (just add your length measurement).

Fold in half length ways and right sides together then sew, so now you have a long tube. Turn right side out and iron flat. Try to iron it so the seam is facing you, and in the middle. That way it is a neat finish once you sew it on.

Fold in half again, but this time with short sides together, and so the outsides of the belt are facing each other (does that make sense?) Sew together, trying to make sure there is only a 1” seam allowance so it will still fit. I screwed up the first time and had to try the belt all over again!

Slip that over the onesie and pin in place. Sew down and you’re done!

I have found that adding the belt made the onesie lose a lot of its elasticity. But I think it should still be ok. May be a little bit of a squeeze, but I’m sure they can manage.

Now give yourself a pat on the back, and keep staring at the cuteness. Enjoy.

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